Other Need-to-Know Information about Tibet 4x4 tours
As if Tibet’s geographic jewels were not impressive enough, imagine exploring the culture as well, which has been shaped over centuries by the Mongols, Chinese, indigenous peoples, and others. Tibetan Buddhism also exerts a tremendous amount of influence on the culture. The number of Buddhist temples, monasteries, and palaces is staggering, and each seems more beautiful than the next. Both the Potala Palace and the summer palace of the Dalai Lama are located in Lhasa, as well as the Jokhang temple, which is one of the holiest sites in all of Tibet. Countless other monasteries and temples are scattered throughout the countryside. A few of the more notable are the Samye monastery near Dranang, the Tashilhunpo monastery near Xigatse, and the Rongbuk monastery, which is one of the highest in the world. With a Tibet expedition by 4x4, you’ll get to meet locals in far out of the way villages and see what life is really like there! While maybe not the most thrilling of Tibet adventure activities, be sure to visit a few tea houses during your visit, as they are an integral part of Tibetan daily life.
Getting into Tibet does require a few key steps that cannot be skipped! Since tourism is strictly controlled by the Chinese government, all tourists will need at least one of the permits issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau. Be sure to verify which permits you will need, both online, and with your tour company. That is not all though, make sure you have a valid Chinese visa and Chinese driving permit as well! If arriving by plane, you’ll land at the Lhasa international airport. While you’re most likely to fly into Tibet, there are some overland border crossings that are open to foreigners.
There aren’t many things to worry about during Tibet adventure tours, but you will definitely need to plan accordingly to help prevent altitude sickness! Planet Ride’s tours usually allow time to acclimatize, but consider arriving a few days early, if possible, to help your body out a little more.
What Planet Ride offers for 4x4 adventures in Tibet
Planet Ride features only the best tours and guides, no matter which country or vehicle you decide to go with. Our tours emphasize fun and excitement, as well as deep cultural connections, which is just one of the things that set us apart. Depending on what type of Tibet expedition you would prefer, our 4x4 adventure tours are offered with and without a guide. This gives you the option of complete freedom and a little extra excitement. However, our partner guides are experts on both the local customs and the vehicles you’ll pilot. Along the way, they will handle any maintenance issues that might arise, as well as guide you through local customs to help you meld into the culture.
For an example of one of our Tibet 4x4 tours, imagine spending nine days exploring the Friendship Highway and rugged backcountry of Tibet in a Toyota Land Cruiser. This trip actually begins in Kunming, China as it is one of the easiest and best departures points for Tibet. From Kunming, you’ll fly into Lhasa, where you’ll spend the rest of the day adjusting to the altitude and admiring the heart of Tibetan Buddhism. After another day of adjusting and exploring Buddhist temples, the Barkhor Market, and other points of interest in Lhasa, you will receive your driving permit, get familiar with your 4x4, and get ready to head out! Finally, we embark on our journey, traveling along the Friendship Highway over Kamba Pass. After navigating countless hairpin turns and mountain switchbacks, we’ll arrive in Tibet’s second largest city - Shigatse. Day six is spent summiting Gyatso La Pass and marveling at the 8,000+ meter peaks. Some might say Tibet adventure travel wouldn’t be complete without a trip to Everest and today you’ll do just that! On day seven, we start with an early morning drive to Everest basecamp to catch the sunrise. From there, we’ll venture to the Rongbuk and Tashilhunpo monasteries before returning to Shigatse. On days eight and nine, you’ll slowly make your way back to Lhasa, along the mighty Brahmaputra River.